Green-Beckham and Boehm help Mizzou to SEC Title Game, possible shot at National Championship
Mizzou sophomores and former Missouri State Track and Field Champs integral part of Tiger Football
A pair of former Missouri High School state track and field champions were the top two signees for the University of Missouri’s football recruiting class of 2012. Despite a disappointing 5-7n 2012 season, the pair have been a big part of the historic 2013 season for Mizzou. The duo and Tigers endured a disappointing 5-7 first season in the SEC in 2012, something neither Dorial Green-Beckham or Evan Boehm were used to. But today the Mizzou football squad is playing in the SEC Championship game, in the schools second season in the premier athletic conference in the country.
Mizzou sophomores Evan Boehm and Dorial Greeen-Beckham have helped lead the Tigers to an 11-1 mark this season, capturing the SEC East Division title, and just a play away from being undefeated and ranked number one. The Tigers will play Auburn at 3 p.m. CT at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. With a win and some help the fifth-ranked Tigers could be playing in the National Championship game next month.
Dorial Green-Beckham was rated as the top football recruit in the country in 2012 by Rivals.com. The Hillcrest High School standout was a two-time All-American and set the national high school record for receiving yards. As a sophomore in 2010, Green-Beckham captured the Missouri Class 4 State Track titles in the 100 meters and triple jump. He also took second in the long jump, on his way to earning the Gatorade Missouri Track and Field Player of the Year Award. He has personal bests of 10.59-100, 22.21-200, 23-2.25-Long Jump, 47-3.75-Triple Jump.
A standout in basketball as well, Green-Beckham is currently listed as 6’ 6’’ and 225 lbs. Sadly for track fans his track career came to an end as a junior in 2011. At the Missouri State University Aldo Sebben Relays, Green-Beckham strained a hamstring in anchoring the 4×100 Hillcrest squad to victory. With a possible long football career ahead of him, Green Beckham has not hit the track since.
Green-Beckham capped a high school football career with a national record and was named the Parade High School Football Player of the Year in 2011. After signing with Mizzou in February, 2012, Green-Beckham led his Hornets squad to a runner-up finish in the Missouri Class 4 Basketball Championships at Mizzou Arena on the MU campus.
Green-Beckham had a solid freshman year and earned Honorable Mention Freshman All-American honors. This year, Green-Beckham is a potent member of the of the country’s best receiver corps. He is second on the team with 49 receptions and 10 touchdowns. He set a Mizzou record with four touchdown catches against Kentucky last month. Last Saturday, he caught a 38-yard bomb in the end zone to help the Tigers beat Texas A&M.
Evan Boehm had a phenomenal high school career at Lee’ Summit West High School. He may be the only, or one of just a few Missouri athletes to ever capture State titles in football, wrestling, and track and field, in the same school year. Boehm did that in 2010-11. He led the Titans to the 2010 Missouri Class 5 State Football crown, before winning the 2011 Class 4 title at 285 lbs. in wrestling to cap a one-loss season. Then in May of 2011, Boehm captured the 2011 Class 4 Discus title with a toss of 182-07, which puts him 12th on the state meet all-time performance list.
As a senior in the fall of 2011, Boehm and the Lee’s Summit West Football team’s season came to an end in the State Semi-finals with a four-overtime loss to Staley, 76-70. At the 2012 State Wrestling Meet, Boehm came up just short of a repeat. He lost to Parkway South’s Donnell Walker in the 285 lb. title match. Walker would go on to beat Boehm and all other in the Shot Put in May, capturing the Class 4 title on his last toss.
Boehm also came up just short of a second straight discus title. He finished third at the 2012 State Meet in Class 4 and eighth in the shot put. Boehm’s 188-07 discus toss at sectionals likely puts him in the top 10 all-time of Missouri performers, and he finished with a personal best of 53-10 in the shot put.
Boehm was ranked as the 42nd best football recruit by ESPN and earned All-American honors as a senior. The 6-3, 315 lb. Boehm hasn’t slowed down at Mizzou. He has started all 24 games in his two seasons, a streak which is tied for second on the team. He started last year at guard and this year at center.
Boehm has helped the Tiger offense to national rankings of 17th, 18th, and 14th in total offense, rushing offense, and scoring offense. In addition, the team ranks second in the SEC in rushing and is tied for second in scoring offense. Boehm earned Freshman All-American honors for his 2012 campaign and may be on his way to earning more honors and a career in the NFL.
Both Green-Beckham and Boehm played for their fathers who were their head football coaches in high school.
The pair aren’t the only Tigers with prep track and field success. Senior receiver Marcus Lucas helped the Liberty Blue Jays to a runner-up finish in Class 4 in 2010. Lucas, 6-5, 220lb, is one of three starting Mizzou receivers at 6-4 or taller. He leads the Tigers with 50 catches on the year and caught 10 balls for 101 yards against Indiana earlier in the year. As a senior in 2010, Lucas took fifth in the Class 4 Triple Jump, sixth in the long jump, and helped the Blue Jays to a runner-up 4×100 finish.
Senior Captain and cornerback E.J. Gaines was an All-Stater in track at Fort Osage High School in Independence. Gaines is third on the Mizzou squad with 59 tackles this year and is a huge part of the Tigers great takeaway defense. Gaines has four interceptions-31st nationally-despite missing 2.5 games with injury. Gaines has twice been named conference co-defensive player of the week, and the Tigers lead the nation with a 42 game streak of forcing a turnover. As a senior for Fort Osage in 2010, Gaines placed 7th in the Class 4 100 meter dash, behind winner Green-Beckham. After running the second fastest 4×100 prelim, Gaines and the Indians were unable to finish the 4×100 final.
Freshman Joey Burkett had a tremendous career at Jefferson City High School. The All-State linebacker captured the 2012 Missouri Class 4 Pole Vault crown with a jump of 15-9. Burkett added a runner-up finish for the Jays as a member of the 4×100 squad. After a foot injury that ended his high school football career midway through the 2012 season, Burkett recovered for a solid senior season in 2013, but wasn’t able to reach the form to break the state meet record of 16-4.5. Burkett cleared 15-0 and finished second on misses.
Hickman All-State sprinter and jumper Wesley Leftwich is a redshirt sophomore at Mizzou and even skipped his senior season of track, graduating early and enrolling at Mizzou a semester early. Along with these athletes, there are surely others with track and field success on the Mizzou squad
As mentioned, Mizzou is going to need some help to make it to the national title game if they win the SEC title. Sitting fifth in the Bowl Championship Series standings, they play third ranked Auburn. If they win they would almost certainly jump ahead of #4 Alabama and #3 Auburn. #1 Florida State plays Duke today in the ACC Title game, and is a huge favorite to win. So, if the Tigers beat Auburn and Florida State wins, the Tigers need help. The Tigers would need #10 Michigan State to beat #2 Ohio State. Ohio State is the team of Ezekiel Elliott. Elliott is the freshman running back who captured a handful of hurdle and sprint titles for Missouri Class 3 John Burroughs and was named the 2013 Missouri Gatorade Track and Field Player of the year. Elliott’s parents are Mizzou Alums. Father Stacy played football for the Tigers while mother Dawn was a heptathlete on the track and field team.